Sometimes I feel weird/wrong for continuing this blog because it started as Lilly's blog. The place where I could update friends, family, and other interested people with what was going on with her. We simply couldn't keep up with all the inquiries! But then it also became a sounding board for me to share with the world about Lilly's life and to show that about 10% of babies with Trisomy 18 can live to see their first birthday. (And I know a number of other children that have T-18 that have lived way past their 1st birthday!)
Not only did I want to let people know what our specific prayer requests for Lilly were, but I wanted to document her life both for our family, and as a help for other families coming into the Trisomy 18 world. Another thing that I wanted to share was that special needs children are not a burden to their families, but that we enjoyed them and they enjoyed us.
Over the past 4 years, I have gotten a number of emails from mothers who were pregnant with babies
All of the abortion pushers expressed concerns about what the Trisomy 18 baby would do to the family. (If anyone was concerned about the baby itself, the moms writing me did not express that.) So the moms wanted to know things like: Did Lilly tear apart our family? Were my other children damaged because of Lilly's life? Did we resent Lilly? Was it a relief when she died? Would I make the same choice to have her? Did she just take up too much of our time? Etc.
I responded to these emails the same way that I hoped I came across in my blog posts. We ALL LOVED Lilly! No one in our family resented her. Tabby and Hunter adored her and never complained about her. She bonded us all together as we fought for her life. We were proud of her. No one resented the extra time she took. We all loved to help her. Lilly's life blessed us in many, often surprising! ways, and still continues to bless us. We are all better people because of Lilly and we still thank God for her!
I could go on and on but I think I made my point. These special children are not a burden - they are a blessing. No matter how long or short their life is, it will change you. Bless you. They are worth the heartbreak when you lose them.
Oh - and in spite of what many people out there seem to believe - these little "retarded" babies really do have feelings and can express love and delight. Lilly could smile and laugh. She responded to our voices. She loved watching what everyone was doing. She was curious about things. She liked routine. She loved her physical and occupational therapy sessions and working hard. And she had very strong opinions about how much she hated being in hospitals. :)
I could go on and on about this topic, but I will spare you. ;) So today, for Trisomy 18 Awareness Day, I just want everyone to know - YES, THESE CHILDREN ARE WORTH IT!